Statins are among the most widely prescribed drugs in the United States. In addition to their established lipid-lowering and cardiovascular protective effect, some case-control studies have suggested that statins could have chemopreventive effects for colorectal cancer (CRC). In this issue of the Journal, Singh et al. examined this question using a potentially powerful population-based "electronic cohort" design, which essentially eliminates many of the biases inherent in case-control and traditional cohort studies. They found no evidence of a chemoprotective effect of statin use, a finding that is consistent with previous cohort and interventional studies that have addressed this issue. We conclude that the best-designed studies of the issue indicate that statin use is neither a major risk factor nor a protective factor for CRC and that we have come very near to the end of the road for the hypothesis relating statins to CRC risk.
Comment On: Am J Gastroenterol. 2009 Dec;104(12):3015-2319809413